I was so happy to see my UPS man today when he delivered my Ditto Form! Here she is, modeling a bra I've been working on.
A Ditto Form is a custom-made dress form created from a 3D body scan. It is made of foam, so it is super lightweight and can be hung (as shown here from an IV stand) or mounted on a dress form stand, as in the photos below.
A couple months ago I saw that Carol from Ditto Form was coming through Texas, and I was so happy to be able to make an appointment to get a scan done. She came to my house and set up the scanning equipment. I had to stand on a platform that slowly spun around while dressed only in my undies. It was only slightly embarrassing, since Carol was very professional.
A couple weeks later we reviewed the final 3D mockup on the computer and did a zoom call to make sure we both approved of how it looked. And today, my form arrived! I chose to hang my new from instead of using a dress form stand since I mostly make lingerie and it's a pain to constantly take my form off the stand to dress her.
So how does it compare with the real me? Take a look.
I also wanted to show you a comparison with a standard (perhaps "idealized"?) size 10 PGM dress form and the Ditto Form of my actual body. I want to be clear here, I am pointing out the differences not as a put down to myself, but as a way of realizing my actual shape and how I can best make clothes to fit my body.
To me, the most obvious differences here are my much bigger waist and higher bust. I do have a larger waist compared with my other measurements for "standard sizes", so this is no surprise. I had also suspected that my breasts are higher up on the chest wall than a standard size, so this confirmed it for me. No wonder I have such a hard time finding dresses that fit!
From the side you can see the curve of my spine is much different than the PGM form. I have very erect posture (thank you, ballet), but after many years of working at the computer, like many people I have a rounded forward shoulder. Also my lower spine curves inwards (swayback) and my bum is much rounder than the PGM form. Also my lower abdomen protrudes a bit and it definitely not as flat as the PGM form.
Lastly, here is the back. What is most striking here is definitely the way my spine curves off to the left. To me at least, this wasn't so obvious from the front or side. Carol happened to mention it while she was doing my scans and it really surprised me. Last April I strained my low back on the left side and have been in pain since then. This wasn't the first time I'd hurt my back, and my doctor was never very helpful so I didn't even go in for an appointment, but seeing the way my spine looked really concerned me. I managed to get a referral for physical therapy, and the therapist twisted me all around in a pretzel and made my back crack in a bunch of places. He pulled on my leg a few times too, and after much popping and creaking I had instant relief in my back. It was amazing, and I'm still working on strengthening my glutes and other muscles so this doesn't happen again.
But anyway, back to the forms. You can see in the back (and also perhaps from the side) that my shoulder blades protrude more than the PGM form. RTW shirts always feel tighter in the upper back and upper chest, so I'm thinking this is a combination of protruding shoulder blades and higher bust. Also my upper hip and lower hip are more lumpy bumpy than the PGM form, which is definitely a more natural shape but not as visually pleasing as one smooth hip curve.
Seeing these differences help me to realize why I have certain reoccurring fit issues when I work with patterns that are both big box and indie. I find fitting on myself a bit difficult, especially with pants. I'm hoping that this form can help me improve my work not only for my personal sewing, but also in my business by showing my creations on a more realistic body form.
As a disclosure note, I didn't receive any sort of compensation from Ditto Form, I'm just a happy customer!
I design lingerie sewing patterns for everyday comfort and feminine style in an inclusive size range. Fill up your underwear drawer with beautiful custom-made bras and panties in your favorite fabrics and trims, designed to fit your body.